Super creamy swirly cheesecake coming right up. With its biscuity base, creamy salted caramel filling, and salted maple roasted cashew clusters, this luscious Caramel Rooibos Cheesecake about to redefine how you feel after cheesecake!
Here’s what you’re about to slice into:
- A biscuit-like base created with almonds, oats, and coconut
- A creamy salted caramel filling, naturally sweetened with dates and honey-like Freshpak Rooibos tea, no sweetener needed
- Topped with the most moreish salted maple crunchy cashew clusters (be careful as these will get pinched off the top)
15 minutes is all you need to prep this one – the hardest part will be waiting for it to set. Watch my 1 minute vid below to see exactly how, then give it a try this week!
How to make this Caramel Rooibos Cheesecake
What is rooibos?
Rooibos tea, otherwise known as red tea or red bush tea, is a sweet earthy honey-like tea from South Africa. It’s made from the fermented leaves of the red bush plant, Aspalathus linearis, which is only grown one place in the world – the mountainous west coast of South Africa.
I had tried rooibos before and enjoyed it, but it’s not something that’s super common growing up in New Zealand or Australia. So when a brand called Freshpak contacted me from South Africa, to ask whether I’d like to create a recipe with their rooibos, to help boost awareness of this delicious beverage and its health benefits, I was super keen. To make rooibos tea, the leaves of the red bush plant are fermented, turning them a red-brown colour. It’s then brewed loose leaf or in bags, just like regular tea. As it’s not related to green or black tea, it’s classified as a “herbal” tea. But as the flavour is more like a rich honey-infused black tea, it makes it perfect not only for consuming on its own, but also with milk like an English Brekky. I’m excited to see Rooibos lattes start cropping up soon too, for all us alternative matcha/turmeric/beetroot latte lovers. In fact, these are already super popular in South Africa.
Nutritional benefits of rooibos tea
So what is rooibos good for, aside from adding a unique honey-like flavour to this caramel cheesecake? Here are some of its health benefits:
- Naturally caffeine free – I love a good oat or soy coffee, but it’s good to not overdose on too much caffeine, making rooibos a great option. Perfect for your afternoon hot bevvy, in the evening, during pregnancy, and even for children. If you tend to be overstimulated by caffeinated beverages such as cocoa/cacao, coffee, and black tea in general, rooibos can be a lovely way to still enjoy a milky hot drink, without always having to be the peppermint tea girl.
- High in antioxidants – rooibos is a rich source of antioxidants including polyphenols and flavonoids.
- Naturally Preservative Free – you’ll find no nasties in this delicious brew, just pure 100% natural Rooibos goodness.
Freshpak Rooibos Tea is currently sold in selected Countdown, Pak ‘n Save and New World stores, as well as selected South African stores throughout New Zealand.
What are cheesecakes normally made from?
Back to our cheesecake. We love them yes, but often our digestive system is not so happy. Here’s what I found on a quick search for a “classic cheesecake recipe”:
Sweet biscuits, butter, sugar, cream cheese, sugar, sour cream, vanilla, lemon juice, eggs, and cream.
I’m loving the vanilla and lemon, but the rest probably wouldn’t win too many awards at a health sweepstake. So I’ve re-jazzed our cheesecake using a few cheeky alternatives, whilst still trying to retain all that delicious cheesecake flavour.
Ingredients for this caramel rooibos cheesecake
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Rolled oats
- Desiccated coconut
- Cacao butter
- Vanilla extract
- Freshpak Rooibos tea
- Plant-based milk
- Maple syrup
Plus a food processor, a blender, and a smallish cake tin (I used a 20 cm here to get a nice tall cake).
Tips for making the best raw vegan cheesecakes
Raw vegan cheesecakes are actually really easy to make, so don’t be intimidated by the finished result looking a little flashy. Here are a few of my top tips:
- Use a food processor for the base – the S-blade on a food processor does the best job on cheesecake bases, and helps to chop your almonds, oats, coconut, and dates, into a couscous like texture that will stick to make your biscuity crumb. Yes you can get away with a blender, but you’ll have to scrape the sides down, and the bottom bit tends to turn into a bit of a puree.
- Blend your dry ingredients before adding dates – blending the dry component of your base to a couscous before adding anything wet or sticky like dates or vanilla, will help you avoiding a big rolling clump inside the processor.
- Pop a little water in before your compostable wrap – it helps the wrap to stay down, before you pour in and press down your filling.
- Use a blender for your filling – blenders have a claw like texture which are perfect for turning things like cashews into a silky creamy. The angle of the blade brings the liquid back down on itself rather than swirling it round and round. Again, you can use a food processor for your filling, but honestly if you want super creamy like the store-bought raw cheesecakes, go the blender route.
How to store your Caramel Rooibos Cheesecake
Cacao butter is what makes this cheesecake set, but because I haven’t used a huge amount, it’s best stored in the freezer for a nice firm consistency. If you make a raw cheesecake with a higher cacao butter or coconut oil content, or less liquid, you can get away with keeping it in the fridge. I often prefer keeping things in the freezer, but do note that it knocks a couple notches off the sweetness level, so play around with fridge vs freezer and see what you like best.
If you are keeping it in the freezer, I recommend slicing it in portions before freezing, that way you can pull a slice out when you need it.
Love raw cheesecakes? Try these:
- Raspberry White Chocolate Cheesecake
- Mango and Turmeric Cheesecake
- Summer Strawberry Cheesecake
- Creamy Lemon Cheesecake
- Blueberry Beetroot Cheesecake
If you make this Caramel Rooibos Cheesecake, let me know! Leave a rating and comment below (it helps others find the recipe too), or tag me @begoodorganics on Instagram. I can’t wait to hear what you think.
This post was gratefully made possible with the support of Freshpak Rooibos. Thank you for supporting the brands that help me keep Be Good Organics a live and thriving recipe resource for you. I’m lucky to be able to work with the best!
- ½ c almonds
- ½ c rolled oats
- ½ c desiccated coconut
- 1 c dates
- 1 tbsp cacao butter melted
- 1 tbsp water
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- pinch sea salt
Caramel Roobios Filling
- 2 ½ c cashews soaked 1 hr
- 2 rooibos tea bags
- 1 c boiling water
- 1 c dates soaked
- ½ c cacao butter melted
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- pinch sea salt
- ½ c dates
- ¼ c plant-based milk
Salted Maple Cashew Clusters
- ½ c cashews
- 2 tsp maple syrup
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- Brew your rooibos tea with the tea bags and boiling water in a bowl, with a plate on top to keep the steam in. Soak your cashews if you haven’t already.
- Blend almonds, oats, and coconut in a food processor to a couscous like crumb, then add the dates, cacao butter, vanilla and salt. Blend until it sticks together well between your fingers, but still has some texture. Pour into a cake tin lined with clear biodegradable wrap, and press down until firm.
- Rinse and drain the cashews, and remove and squeeze out the rooibos tea bags from your tea. Blend them in a blender with the dates, vanilla, and salt until super creamy and smooth. Then slowly add the cacao butter while the blender is running to emulsify and thicken the filling, then pour onto the biscuit crust base.
- Blend the dates and milk for the caramel drizzle until super smooth, the dollop onto the filling. Swirl carefully with a skewer in figure eights, moving around the tin like I’ve done in the video until you get a nice swirl pattern (don’t overswirl or it’ll all end brown).
- Toast the cashews lightly in a pan until golden, then turn off the heat and add the maple and salt, stirring until the cashews stick a little to form clusters. Place these around the cake, pressing in very gently, then place the cheesecake in the freezer for 2 hours to set. Slice and serve!
- Food processor
- 20 cm cake tin
- Gluten free: Replace the oats with more almonds, cashews, or buckwheat.
- Nut free: Replace the almonds with sunflower seeds, and the cashews with hemp seeds.
- Sugar free: Replace the maple syrup with double the amount of date paste (they won’t cluster quite as much).